Debates, Snow, and Moments of Awe


A Very Hostile Pudding
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It's strange, how the mind switches back and forth, always riding the fence about certain things. Aside from creation vs evolution vs aliens (lol!), my mind had for a while been in debate about whether or not I love the winter season.

First, I'd like to take a moment to remind those who know and to educate those who don't that I live in the great white north. That's Canada, if you couldn't guess. Lately, our winters have been pretty meek, but this year's is, well.... I can't think of a better word to describe it than "big ol' cranky dragon." Dragon, because I just finished reading Inheritance, the last installment to Christopher Paolini's Inheritance novels. But that's another story for another time.

Stepping away from the tangent mobile, here is my debate and how I came to decide whether or not I still love winter like I used to as a child:

No one ever really grows up completely. There will always be something in your adult life that will make you act or have the same feelings you did as a child. There are many things on that list where I'm concerned, but the winter season is at the top of the list. Outside the season, and especially in the hot summer months, I yern for the winter, for the snow and the cold. I think about putting on my snowmobiling suit and just jumping into the snow like I would as a child. I talk excitedly with my best friend about making snowmen and forts (yes, I'm almost 24 years old and I still think about snow forts) but when the time actually comes, I've lost my desire.

Why? Why is it that once winter finally gets here, I start to loathe it? I can tell you right now that it's not the cold, nor is it the illnesses that circulate during this time of year. The only cold I catch is a sinus cold, which I've come to accept will happen at least twice a year for me regardless. Now let's put aside those elements and also the fact that on a good year, the snow up here will last from November until middle of April.

Think with me.... Oh yes. I've got it now.


We have a snowblower/thrower/whatever you want to call it. However, it has been sitting in our temporary garage for the whole season. Why? Because a certain lazy father hasn't gotten around to fixing it. Because of that, I've had to shovel over three feet of snow in under two weeks. I have a four-car driveway and yes, perhaps that's not so large but it isn't exactly small either, nevermind the two foot concrete-solid wall of snow at the end of the driveway where the snowplow was nice enough to dump half of its load. On top of that, I have a bad back, courtesy of tailbone damage on two separate but similarily airheaded occasions. And to add to the list, I have to clean off the roof of the temporary garage so that it doesn't dump a foot of snow (because that's how much it snows in one day) onto our expensive snowmobiles and cause expensive damage. Also, I have to shovel a path from the driveway to the deck stairs, clean off the stairs and the deck for fire escape reasons. All combined, in one day, and having a foot of fresh snow to get rid of, it's just too much for this fat, injured person. And thus, I find myself loathing the winter with the fury of a woman scorned.

But then something happens to change my mind.

Last night, as I finished shoveling the deck at around 8 pm, I happened to take a pause to catch my breath. It was cold. And I don't mean fragile cityfolk cold. I mean -22 celcius (-8F) where it was just a little uncomfortable to stay standing still. But there I was, standing there, looking around my tiny little community from about fifteen feet up, when I noticed something most intriguing.


I wasn't sure whether it was snowing in the slightest or whether it was my breath crystalizing in the cold air, but the deck light at my back was catching something reflective and miniscule floating in the air. Now, I've always felt a sense of awe when I gaze up at the stars on a crisp, clear night. But seeing them so vivid, pasted against the navy sky, accompanied by a million little dancing specks of glitter was a new and stunning experience. I turned around, finding them everywhere, surrounding me. They were like the tiniest of fireflies.

Of course I did the first thing that came to mind and reached out with a gloved hand to see if I could touch these glittering specks. They danced away from my hand and sparkled brighter for a moment before settling back into their previous pace. It must have been very fine snow I thought, and pulled the glove off my hand, reaching out again and remaining still for a moment. It was subtle, but I could definitely feel the specks melting as they came in contact with my warm skin. Regardless, I felt like a cat, thoroughly amused with a piece of dangling string and warmth flooded my very soul with a strange sense of accomplishment as if just witnessing this wintry wonder was a remarkable feat. It's impossible for me to fully capture into words the beauty of what I saw that night and I hope that some if not all of you will or already have seen it.

In that moment, I realized two things about myself. The first thing I realized was that I was crying, yes, crying, and smiling like an idiot at this simple, but remarkably beautiful sight. Big fat tears of joy and wonder were rolling down my cheeks. I was speechless, a tight knot had formed itself in the back of my throat. I was unable to look away. Stupified if you will. The second realization that came to me, after my mind had settled a little, was that all the sweat and pain I'd put into shoveling that day had been worth it because I would have never been standing there at that moment otherwise.

And so, returning to my warm house, I couldn't help but think "I love winter!"

Now here are my questions to you:

Have you ever experienced something that left you in awe, speechless, or in tears?

What is your opinion of Winter?

Is there anything you've previously debated about with yourself for a long while but have finally decided to take a side?
What a beautiful experience, Dawners. So many <3s for you.

Have you ever experienced something that left you in awe, speechless, or in tears?

((I'll have to come back to this once I think of something, I know I've had this happen before, but just can't think atm))

What is your opinion of Winter?

I love the Winter, but unlike most, I live where it doesn't snow or get much colder (during winter) than the high to mid teens (F), and that's in a cold year. I do regularly work in the northern lands of California where it does snow, so I can see how it would get maddeningly frustrating.

Is there anything you've previously debated about with yourself for a long while but have finally decided to take a side?

Yes, I go back and forth with a lot of things. Drinking is one of them. I go through phases where I love to drink and very much enjoy it, then I'll stop for a long time and hate the thought of being drunk. Another thing is techno music...Do I like it? I think I might, sometimes. Most of the time I can't stand it, but once in a while I really like it...SEE! That is how I am with Techno.

I guess that doesn't answer your question since I am still in debate about what side to be on with techno music and alcohol. Oh, OK I got one. Pineapple on my pizza. I used to hate it, now I finally realized that it is pretty damn good.

Have you ever experienced something that left you in awe, speechless, or in tears?

I'm an emotional person. Just reading your experience brought me to tears. I cry easily. That's not to say that my tears aren't sincere, just that sometimes, I can't control myself. Everything goes to my heart, everything others say (unless in jest), I take as their sincere words. So I have so many experiences, it's hard to pick one, but I'll pick the most recent one.... my family. Sometimes, I'm a spoiled brat and I complain like a pre-teen girl on crack, but I don't mean it. Right now, my brother's putting MY laundry in the dryer because I mumbled something about being sleepy. Earlier, my dad called up on the school and fixed up the health insurance charge they were giving me on my tuition that wasn't supposed to be there. I said I didn't know who to talk to. So he called the main line and spent over thirty minutes until he got to the right person. I was just speechless. Coming back to Iwaku, I thought that it would be hard to get back in the flow, I thought it would be weird to everyone that I just suddenly popped up in need of their support, but it wasn't. I was welcomed with open arms. Miruniichan, Orion, Roreh, Vay, Teggie, Myrn, Jinx, Asmu, Danana, Kitti, Oct, Grumpeh, TK, and everyone else~~ they're all treating me like I never left. Like I'm still loved. Like I still have that place in their hearts no matter what. There's that place for me, even if I leave and come back, I will still be their Sakura. Something like that, I think. What I'm trying to say is, over the last two weeks of winter break, I've been hit in the face with the reality that the people around me really love me. When I'm lost in my studies, or busy with school, I don't realize. I don't see the love until I come upon that one day where I'm looking back and I'm just shocked at my own selfishness. So these two to three weeks have been an inspiring time. In each person I know, I've seen a sincerity, a warmth, and a kindness. Even if I were in the streets, if I were to become homeless, if I were to fail and never graduate, I will not forget what I just learned. People love you for who you are, they give you a place in your heart and they support you even when you don't see it. Maybe I was blind to it all along, or maybe I just wasn't thankful enough, but I see it now. And I know, that once I start school again, I might forget, I might not value that love as much as I do right now, but the awe will not vanish. The speechlessness, the thankful tears that are making it hard for me to type right now, will not go away. In the end, we remember the feelings, but I hope I will remember the people that gave me these feelings, too.

What is your opinion of Winter?

I was born in a blizzard, the blizzard of '93, one of the greatest snowstorms that hit New York. Every year since I was able to stand, I've been playing in the snowstorms. Every kid does that, builds a snowman, rolls around and makes snow angels. But after all that, when my dad would come and ask me to come inside, I would ask for a few more minutes. Damp from the snow and numb from the cold, I would lay back and look up at the sky as the snowflakes came down onto my eyelashes. It's an amazing feeling of calm and awe. Reading what you wrote reminded me of it. It's become somewhat of a routine for me, doing that. I wonder if it's the snow that I know so well from the moment I left the hospital with my dad. Or maybe it's just something about the thought of being all alone, and yet the snow is with me.

I love Winter more than any other season. It blows my mind and soothes my heart.

Is there anything you've previously debated about with yourself for a long while but have finally decided to take a side?

I'm not sure what I'm doing with my life. Yesterday, my psycho mother had the nerve to come into the room and ask me, 'After college where are you going to work? What's your salary going to be?' As much as the question, relative to me only being in my first semester of college so far, pissed me off, it almost made me realize I didn't have a clue. I chose this major because it was my second-choice of what I liked to do. I wasn't sure where I was going with it or whether it was the major for me.

I think about it and I realize, if I had gone with journalism like I initially wished, I would've been happier, I would've had a 4.0 gpa and I would have been at home, laughing and enjoying life, playing video games, making music videos, and being carefree. But instead, I'm at an engineering school, in constant tension, crying over my grades, working so hard that I have to constantly criticize myself to work harder to meet the standards. Every day, I look at my 2.0 gpa and I ask myself how I really got into this school? How can I survive? My only answer is to work even harder. I have to keep working.

It wasn't enough. Going into my second semester, I decided this: I will work harder. I will find a balance and I will find my way of studying. If it means giving up my social life and not coming home to see the family, I will do it. Because at the end of this year, I want to have my answer. When my results come out in May, I will take that as my answer and I will accept it.

I don't want to make excuses for myself or regret that I never tried my best just because it was difficult.